Fred Warmbier speaks out after son Otto's release from North Korea: 'We don't believe anything they say'

Fred Warmbier said he was stunned when told of his son's condition one week ago.

American University of Virginia student Otto Warmbier, who was detained for 17 months in North Korea and suffered a serious neurological injury was "brutalized" by the reclusive regime, his father said on Thursday.

"Disbelief. Couldn't sit down. I don't know what being in shock is, but I'm pretty sure I was," he said, referring to being informed Otto Warmbier was in a coma.

Despite the "severe" injury, 22-year-old Warmbier is stable and receiving treatment at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center, center spokeswoman Kelly Martin said at a news briefing at Warmbier's high school in Wyoming, Ohio.

RELATED: Photos of Warmbier's homecoming

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A person believed to be Otto Warmbier is transferred from a medical transport airplane to an awaiting ambulance at Lunken Airport in Cincinnati, Ohio, U.S., June 13, 2017. REUTERS/Bryan Woolston TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
People, believed to be family members, embrace next to the medical transport plane carrying Otto Warmbier before he was transferred to an awaiting ambulance at Lunken Airport in Cincinnati, Ohio, US, June 13, 2017. REUTERS/Bryan Woolston
Local residents hold signs of support to welcome home Otto Warmbier at Lunken Airport in Cincinnati, Ohio, US, June 13, 2017. REUTERS/Bryan Woolston
People, believed to be family members, embrace next to the medical transport plane carrying Otto Warmbier before he was transferred to an awaiting ambulance at Lunken Airport in Cincinnati, Ohio, US, June 13, 2017. REUTERS/Bryan Woolston
People, believed to be family members, approach and board the medical transport plane carrying Otto Warmbier before he was transferred to an awaiting ambulance at Lunken Airport in Cincinnati, Ohio, U.S., June 13, 2017. REUTERS/Bryan Woolston
A person believed to be Otto Warmbier is transferred from a medical transport airplane to an awaiting ambulance at Lunken Airport in Cincinnati, Ohio, U.S., June 13, 2017. REUTERS/Bryan Woolston TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
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Doctors are scheduled to provide further details about Warmbier's condition on Thursday afternoon.

Warmbier has been in a coma since March 2016, shortly after he was sentenced to 15 years of hard labor in North Korea, the family said on Tuesday after he was released.

"We don't believe anything they (North Korea) say," said Fred Warmbier, who was wearing a sport coat that Otto Warmbier had worn during a confession to his crimes last year in North Korea that was broadcast.

SEE ALSO: Report: Suspected North Korea drone spied on US anti-missile system

The New York Times previously cited a senior U.S. official as saying Washington had received intelligence reports Warmbier was repeatedly beaten while in North Korean custody.

Fred Warmbier said of his son's release: "They did not do this out of the kindness of their hearts."

"North Korea does not do anything out of the kindness of their hearts," he added.

Ohio Senator Rob Portman called the North Korean government's handling of Warmbier "abhorrent" in an interview with Fox News.

RELATED: Otto Warmbier, North Korea sentences US student to 15 years of hard labor

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Otto Warmbier, North Korea sentences US student to 15 years of hard labor
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Otto Warmbier, North Korea sentences US student to 15 years of hard labor
Otto Frederick Warmbier (C), a University of Virginia student who was detained in North Korea since early January, is taken to North Korea's top court in Pyongyang, North Korea, in this photo released by Kyodo March 16, 2016. North Korea's supreme court sentenced American student Warmbier, who was arrested while visiting the country, to 15 years of hard labour for crimes against the state, China's Xinhua news agency reported on Wednesday. Mandatory credit REUTERS/Kyodo Mandatory credit REUTERS/Kyodo ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. MANDATORY CREDIT. JAPAN OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN JAPAN. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
U.S. student Otto Warmbier speaks at a news conference in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang February 29, 2016. The U.S. student held in North Korea since early January was detained for trying to steal an item bearing a propaganda slogan from his Pyongyang hotel and has confessed to "severe crimes" against the state, the North's official media said on Monday. REUTERS/KCNA ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS PICTURE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. REUTERS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE AUTHENTICITY, CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS IMAGE. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS PICTURE IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. NO THIRD PARTY SALES. SOUTH KOREA OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN SOUTH KOREA.
U.S. student Otto Warmbier bows at a news conference in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang February 29, 2016. The U.S. student held in North Korea since early January was detained for trying to steal an item bearing a propaganda slogan from his Pyongyang hotel and has confessed to "severe crimes" against the state, the North's official media said on Monday. REUTERS/KCNA ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS PICTURE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. REUTERS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE AUTHENTICITY, CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS IMAGE. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS PICTURE IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. NO THIRD PARTY SALES. SOUTH KOREA OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN SOUTH KOREA.
U.S. student Otto Warmbier speaks at North Korea's top court, in this photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang on March 16, 2016. North Korea's supreme court sentenced Warmbier, a 21-year-old University of Virginia student, who was arrested while visiting the country, to 15 years of hard labour on Wednesday for crimes against the state. REUTERS/KCNA ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS PICTURE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. REUTERS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE AUTHENTICITY, CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS IMAGE. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. NO THIRD PARTY SALES. NOT FOR USE BY REUTERS THIRD PARTY DISTRIBUTORS. SOUTH KOREA OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN SOUTH KOREA. THIS PICTURE IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS.
Otto Frederick Warmbier, a University of Virginia student who has been detained in North Korea since early January, attends a news conference in Pyongyang, North Korea, in this photo released by Kyodo February 29, 2016. Warmbier was detained for trying to steal a propaganda slogan from his Pyongyang hotel and has confessed to "severe crimes" against the state, the North's official media said on Monday. Warmbier, 21, was detained before boarding his flight to China over an unspecified incident at his hotel, his tour agency told Reuters in January. Mandatory credit REUTERS/Kyodo ATTENTION EDITORS - FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. MANDATORY CREDIT. JAPAN OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN JAPAN.
U.S. student Otto Warmbier has his fingerprints taken at North Korea's top court, in this photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang on March 16, 2016. North Korea's supreme court sentenced Warmbier, a 21-year-old University of Virginia student, who was arrested while visiting the country, to 15 years of hard labour on Wednesday for crimes against the state. REUTERS/KCNA ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS PICTURE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. REUTERS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE AUTHENTICITY, CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS IMAGE. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. NO THIRD PARTY SALES. NOT FOR USE BY REUTERS THIRD PARTY DISTRIBUTORS. SOUTH KOREA OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN SOUTH KOREA. THIS PICTURE IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS.
Otto Frederick Warmbier (C), a University of Virginia student who was detained in North Korea since early January, is taken out of North Korea's top court after being sentenced, in Pyongyang, North Korea, in this photo released by Kyodo March 16, 2016. North Korea's supreme court sentenced American student Warmbier, who was arrested while visiting the country, to 15 years of hard labour for crimes against the state, China's Xinhua news agency reported on Wednesday. Mandatory credit REUTERS/Kyodo ATTENTION EDITORS - FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. MANDATORY CREDIT. JAPAN OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN JAPAN. THIS IMAGE WAS PROCESSED BY REUTERS TO ENHANCE QUALITY, AN UNPROCESSED VERSION WILL BE PROVIDED SEPARATELY.
U.S. student Otto Warmbier reacts at a news conference in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang February 29, 2016. The U.S. student held in North Korea since early January was detained for trying to steal an item bearing a propaganda slogan from his Pyongyang hotel and has confessed to "severe crimes" against the state, the North's official media said on Monday. REUTERS/KCNA ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS PICTURE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. REUTERS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE AUTHENTICITY, CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS IMAGE. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS PICTURE IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. NO THIRD PARTY SALES. SOUTH KOREA OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN SOUTH KOREA. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
WYOMING, OHIO - APRIL 26: Fred and Cindy Warmbier stand in their home. Their son, Otto Warmbier, is incarcerated in North Korea after having been convicted and sentenced to 15 years' hard labor for 'hostile acts against the DPRK'. (Photo Maddie McGarvey/For the Washington Post)
Charlottesville VA - May 20: Emmett Saulnier of Cincinnati celebrates graduation at the University of Virginia, Sat. May 20, 2017 while remembering his friend Otto Warmbier who is being detained in North Korea following a trip there in January 2016. (Photo by Norm Shafer/ For The Washington Post via Getty Images).
Charlottesville VA - May 20: Dan Matson of Ashburn, Va., Ned Ende of Richmond, Va. and Tyler Rihn of Leesburg, Va. celebrate graduation at the University of Virginia, Sat. May 20, 2017 while remembering their friend Otto Warmbier who is being detained in North Korea following a trip there in January 2016. (Photo by Norm Shafer/ For The Washington Post via Getty Images).
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"Now we know why they wouldn't allow consular access," he said. "It's a real tragedy."

U.S. President Donald Trump spoke to Fred Warmbier on Wednesday night, Warmbier said. Trump discussed how U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Joseph Yun, the U.S. State Department's special envoy on North Korea, worked together to help secure Otto's release, Warmbier said.

Fred Warmbier praised the Trump administration's handling of the situation. Asked if the administration of former President Barack Obama had done enough to secure their son's release, Warmbier said: "The results speak for themselves."

(Writing by Timothy Mclaughlin in Chicago; Additional reporting by Jon Herskovitz in Austin, Texas; Editing by Bernadette Baum)

Christina Gregg contributed to this report.

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